Shoppers are increasingly using their phones to browse and compare before buying, but many feel that the mobile shopping experience is lacklustre and dated.
According to research by Adobe based on its Adobe Analytics data, two thirds of European respondents believe mobile shopping has not improved since last year. This is the same sentiment Adobe recorded in 2017, suggesting brands have fallen behind and have more work to do in making their mobile shopping journey smoother and less stressful, with one in six UK consumers now finding mobile shopping stressful.
Instead, shoppers are turning to mobile social media to research and review products as they look for bargains and help with purchasing decisions. According to Adobe, 30% of European shoppers consult social media for inspiration before making a purchase.
France leads the way, with 39% saying they consult social channels before making a purchase. Germany comes in second, with 27% of shoppers saying they use social media for inspiration (up from 19% in 2017).
However, while Social is still relevant in the UK, it has been losing influence since 2016, with just 24% of consumers turning to social channels for inspiration before making a holiday purchase.
Despite its lacklustre feel, mobile is still incredibly popular, with a separate study by by Walker Sands for Salesforce predicting that mobile will dominate this year’s peak season, accounting for 68% of all ecommerce visits over ‘Black November’ and the Christmas period.
For the first time during the holiday season, says Walker Sands, shoppers will place more orders from their phones than computers or tablets. Mobile phones will account for 46% of all orders, edging out computers (44%) and far outpacing tablets (9%).
Mobile will deliver 68% of all ecommerce traffic this season, an all-time high, which reflects 19% year-over-year growth. In addition, mobile traffic share will peak on Christmas Eve, when shoppers will turn to their phones to make 72% of all visits and 54% of orders.
“Mobile is undoubtedly the most disruptive force in retail since the onset of ecommerce,” says Rick Kenney, Head of Consumer Insights, Salesforce. “This is the year shoppers turn to phones, buying more on phones than any other device, and making far more visits, too. We’ll see more visits from phones this season than total ecommerce visits across the entire 2015 shopping season. And even those in-store shoppers are mobile — 83% of shoppers aged 18 to 44 are using their phones while in a physical store.”
The news from Adobe that mobile is popular but needs to up its game, comes as the tech giant predicts that spending this holiday season is set to jump by 25% across the UK, Germany and France, with shoppers in Europe expected to do as much as 50% of their seasonal shopping online.
Nearly 50% of European consumers will do most of their holiday shopping online, says the study, even if more than 40% plan to check out products in store before making their purchase.
In the UK, more than half of shopping budgets (56%) are expected to be spent online this year, with four fifths (80%) planning to spend the same or more online than they did in 2017.
“Online shopping continues to surge, and with consumers across Europe planning to spend more than ever over the holiday season retailers can expect yet another record-breaking year for sales, if they get things right,” says Jamie Brighton, Head of Product & Industry Marketing, Adobe EMEA. “Never has it been more important to deliver a website and mobile experience that stands up to customer expectations and can handle this boost in demand. Even if price is still the deciding factor for many shoppers, the quality of experience they receive plays a major role as well, especially for brands that want to build loyalty and keep people coming back after the holiday rush.”